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City Pr Presentation

City Pr Presentation



This is a presentation I gave in back to back workshops for department heads and public service personnel of a local municipality. The intent was to help them better understand the role of the media ...

This is a presentation I gave in back to back workshops for department heads and public service personnel of a local municipality. The intent was to help them better understand the role of the media and how they can do a better job of communicating on behalf of the city to build citizen trust.



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    City Pr Presentation City Pr Presentation Presentation Transcript

    • Your City in the News Be Ready for your Close-Up Media Relations Training September 30, 2008
      • The news will happen
      • At some point, your organization will want to communicate through the media
      • The difference between succeeding and failing depends on preparation
      Why Media Training?
      • Almost everyone has preconceptions and prejudices about journalists
    • Strong Negative Feelings Typical
      • Missed the point
      • Got the facts wrong
      • Had their idea of the story and fit me into it
      • Focus on the negative, sensational
      • Out to “get” you
    • Impact of Negative Feelings
      • Can be defensive, suspicious
      • Feel as though preparation doesn’t matter
      • Focus on the journalist rather than on the audience
    • Change the Mindset
      • Old : Survive without embarrassing yourself
      • New : Accomplish an objective
        • Increase awareness
        • Increase understanding
        • Get people to take action
    • The Opportunity Mindset
      • What would you want the headline to say?
      • How would you want the news anchor to lead into the story?
      • Write it down!
      • This serves as your objective or purpose.
      • The basics about journalists and the mainstream media
    • Some Basics about Journalists
      • Reporters are doing a job
        • They are story tellers
      • Journalists are busy
        • They want the basics quick and easy
      • Journalists are generalists
        • They know a little about a lot
    • Some Basics about Journalists
      • Journalists don’t care about you
        • The story takes precedence
      • Journalists want “good tape”
        • The more unusual, the better
      • Journalists make you feel at ease
        • They want real, not rehearsed
      • So, how do you know if YOU have a story?
    • Do You Have a Story?
      • Is the news media really the best way to get the message out?
      • What are the chances the story could turn negative?
      • What visuals do/will you have?
      • Do you have a “wow” factor?
    • Do You Have a Story?
      • Do you have personal stories?
      • Is it the first time?
      • Does it signal a trend?
      • Is there conflict?
      • Do you have any celebrity factor?
      • Do you have confidence in your spokesperson?
    • Do You Have a Story?
      • How can you “segment” the story?
        • For the features section
        • For the health/medical writer
        • For the parenting/family writer
        • For the business section
        • For the calendar
        • For television (visuals drive story)
        • For radio (tie to bigger story)
    • Trends Favor Local News
      • The percentage of U.S. newspapers that have increased or decreased coverage of the following topics the last three years:
      Source: Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism
    • What Drives “Newsworthiness”
      • Surprise
      • Emotional Affect
      • Effect
      • Conflict
      • Reporter’s Interest
      • Mistakes
      • Change
      • Editor’s Perspective
      • You can’t decide what is newsworthy, which is why media has such credibility
      • All media has been pressured by the immediacy of the Internet, but some basic rules still apply…
    • Newspaper Schedules, Deadlines
      • Reporters have beats, expertise
      • Watch for developments and present ideas to editor
      • Assignments made 2-3 days out
      • Often have 3 or more stories in development
      • Deadlines throughout the day
    • Television Schedules, Deadlines
      • Reporters have loose beats
      • Often opportunistic in coverage
      • Assignments made at 9 a.m. meeting
      • It’s all about the visuals
      • Deadlines before the mid-day, evening and nightly newscasts
    • Radio Schedules, Deadlines
      • Reporters develop several stories each day
      • No discernable beats
      • Assignments made minute-to-minute
      • Want quick sound bite
      • Deadlines throughout the day
      • How does online media factor into this?
    • Impact of Internet
      • “Citizen Media”
        • Blogs
        • Podcasts
        • Online Video
      • Their personal passion drives what they “cover”
      • Often get the story first
    • Americans who have a blog
      • 8%
      Source: Synovate marketing research, www.synovate.com
    • Americans who read a blog daily
      • 15%
      Source: Synovate marketing research, www.synovate.com
    • Americans who read a blog monthly
      • 28%
      Source: Synovate marketing research, www.synovate.com
    • Americans who read a blog less than once per month
      • 39%
      Source: Synovate marketing research, www.synovate.com
    • Journalists who check a blog list regularly
      • 69%
      Source: Brodeur, 1/8/08
    • Journalists who read blogs at least two to three times per week
      • 57%
      Source: Brodeur, 1/8/08
    • Journalists who spend more than one hour per day reading blogs
      • 21%
      Source: Brodeur, 1/8/08
    • Journalists: blogs have a significant impact on editorial direction
      • 51%
      Source: Brodeur, 1/8/08
    • Report on daily blog mentions
      • Leveraging online/ social media can attract the mainstream media
    • What Should You Do If Called?
      • Be cordial and welcoming
      • Log who called, when and from what media outlet
      • Note the information requested and ask topic of story
      • Ask for some time
      • Confer with Communications & Marketing Director
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do think beyond your interests
        • Journalists focus on the interests of their audience and you should too
      • Don’t get bogged down in details
        • Unless they specifically request minutia, stick with the basics
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do your homework
        • Develop several newsworthy angles to provide the reporter with options
      • Don’t presume to know what the reporter finds interesting
        • Listen to the reporter and be ready to adjust course quickly
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do build a working relationship
        • The real estate in their rolodex is invaluable
      • Don’t take it personally
        • You are an information source first and foremost, not a buddy
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do welcome the attention
        • Be responsive because reporters can help get your message across
      • Don’t snub the little guy
        • Even little media outlets can have big influence
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do hunt for good story ideas
        • Look for good people stories
      • Don’t waste the editor’s time
        • Before presenting a story idea, consider if it is really newsworthy
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do take full advantage of the Internet
        • Reporters prefer to gather the information without interference
      • Don’t bother reporters unnecessarily
        • Follow-up calls should only be done if you offer something of value
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do the reporter’s job
        • Present the information the way reporters do – who, what, where, when, why and how
      • Don’t bury the good stuff
        • Grab a reporter in the first couple sentences because that’s all you have
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do offer to be the reporter’s helper
        • They will appreciate your help in tracking down data or people
      • Don’t ask for favors
        • Their interest is a good story and anything else is an obstacle
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do respect the privacy of those involved
        • Err on the side of caution when it comes to releasing personal information
      • Don’t get tricked
        • Even if a reporter already knows, protect personal information
    • Media Relations Dos and Don’ts
      • Do keep your promises
        • Once you have lost their trust, they won’t come back
      • Don’t blow them off
        • Keeping the information flowing is essential to maintaining the public’s trust
      • Positive media relationships can be invaluable in a crisis
      • Sometimes You Don’t Dictate Timing
    • Crisis Planning
    • Fundamentals: Definition of “Crisis”
      • A crisis is an unexpected and uncontrolled event or series of events that disrupt normal operations for a prolonged period and cause unwanted public scrutiny
    • Fundamentals: Definition of “Crisis”
      • A crisis always has “victims,” which can be either human or animal. If nobody was vicitimized, it’s not a crisis.
    • Developing a Crisis Plan that Works
      • “ One of the first things you learn is you have to have a plan in place. It doesn’t matter whether it’s sophisticated or simple – you’ve got to have one. Frankly, the simpler the plan, the better.”
      • - Larry Hincker, Virginia Tech
    • Developing a Crisis Plan that Works
      • “ Most plans I see are convoluted, unrealistic, out-of-date nightmares to interpret and never tested by a drill. Good plans point you in the right direction so you can act fast. If yours doesn’t, throw it out and start over.”
      • - Richard Amme
    • Developing a Crisis Plan that Works
      • Keep it simple
      • Focus on functional aspects of response
      • Build out crisis infrastructure
      • Examine and mitigate vulnerabilities
    • Planning: Keep the Plan Simple
      • The process of planning involves an objective inward-assessment
        • Examine operations and processes
        • Evaluate and catalogue assets
      • Good plans can be hundreds of pages
      • Better plans are just a few pages
    • Planning: Functional Aspects of Response
      • Who is on the Response Team and who are their alternates?
      • At what point do you activate the Crisis Response Team?
      • How can they be reached 24x7?
      • Who is spokesperson?
    • Prioritizing Target Audiences
      • Insiders
        • Employees, suppliers, customers
      • Government
        • Local, state and federal regulators and lawmakers
      • Neighbors
      • Media to reach community
    • Prioritize from the inside out
        • Employees
        • Citizens
        • Local businesses
      • Other local governments
        • Local, state and federal regulators and lawmakers
      • Neighboring communities
      • Media to reach community
    • Crisis Response
    • Specifics of Crisis Response
      • Scheduling and adequate staffing can’t be overlooked
        • 24x7 means 158 hours per week
      • Be ready for a crush of calls from media, customers and others
        • Your infrastructure may not handle the volume, contributing to confusion and perceptions of poor response
    • In the Media Spotlight: The Critical 10 Minutes
      • Today, everyone with a nice phone can be a “journalist”
      • Video and photos can be posted on the Web within minutes
      • Speculation has a life of its own, so stating facts can quell rumors
    • Guiding Principles of Crisis Response
      • Quickly assess situation and lay out options
      • Your first concern should be the health and safety of anyone involved
      • Express concern and sympathy  
    • Guiding Principles of Crisis Response
      • If the case, emphasize that there will be a complete investigation and your organization will fully cooperate
      • Stick to the facts
        • Focus on the 5 Ws
      • Never guess or speculate about information you don’t know
    • Guiding Principles of Crisis Response
      • Understand that leadership may be part of problem
      • Making a statement quickly can help define the story
        • You can’t wait for comprehensive information
    • Crisis Response Realities
      • In a crisis, confusion and inaccurate information dominate
      • The media deals in black and white and simplicity, but a crisis is shades of gray and complexity
      • Media will assess blame
      • Media often gets information you don’t have
    • Think Actions Over Words
      • Look for opportunities to exhibit concern and control
      • Resist blatant photo ops
      • Document your organization’s efforts, but resist the temptation to self-promote too soon
    • Crisis Recovery
    • Crisis Recovery: The Crisis Lifecycle Discovery True impact clear Personal stories On to the next story Duration Intensity
    • Crisis Recovery: The Crisis Lifecycle Discovery True impact clear Personal stories On to the next story Duration Intensity
    • Examples of Organizations that Recovered Quickly
      • Southwest Airlines – Plane skids off runway
      • City of New York – Terrorist attacks
      • NASA – Columbia disaster
      • Johnson & Johnson – Tylenol tampering
      • Pepsi – Syringe hoax
    • What They Had In Common
      • Visible senior leadership
      • Immediate expressions of concern and sympathy
      • Rapid unequivocal action in the public’s interest
    • Organizations that Failed to Recover Quickly
      • Merck – Product recall
      • Exxon – Environmental disaster
      • Tobacco industry - Lawsuit
      • Firestone – Faulty product
    • What They Had In Common
      • Leadership was late to show
      • Slow to express concern or sympathy
      • Slow to take definitive action
      • Lied and/or stonewalled
      • The On-Camera Interview
    • Interview Basics
      • Have a purpose
      • Have an opportunity mindset
      • Make sure verbal, nonverbal and message are aligned
      • Answer the audience’s core question:
        • What’s In It For ME?
    • Interview Basics
      • Speak from the heart
      • Keep it basic and avoid jargon
      • Your opinion doesn’t matter
      • Don’t speculate, exaggerate or lie
      • Think about likely questions
      • Be in control of yourself and the situation
    • Interview Basics
      • Keep it positive
      • Don’t ramble
      • Return to your messages
      • Remember that everything is on the record
      • If you don’t know, say so
    • You Have the Right to…
      • Know the topic
      • Know the format in which it will take place
      • Ask who else has been interviewed
      • Have time to answer the question without being interrupted
    • You Have the Right to…
      • Deflect questions that are based on speculation, unnamed sources or innuendo
      • Correct misstatements that you make
      • Refer to notes to ensure accuracy
      • Record the interview
    • The Concept of “Control”
      • Interviews are among the few situations in which you don’t feel in control, but in reality, you can be:
        • Responses
        • Environment
        • Time
    • Practice Interview
      • Review your objective
      • Prepare for questions from a television reporter doing a story on the company
    • Evaluation Criteria
      • Confident, at ease?
      • Was message delivered?
      • Focused on interests of audience?
      • Avoid jargon?
      • Assert “control” over the situation?
    • Critiques: Length of Response
      • The average length of a sound bite on TV news:
        • 1969 – 31 sec
        • 1983 – 7.5 sec
        • 1997 – 5.8 sec
        • 2005 – 4.3 sec
      • Source: Schaefer, R. (2006), The Shrinking Sound Bite: Two Decades of Stylistic Evolution in Television News
    • Critique: Unfocused Response
      • If you touch on two subjects in your response, there’s a 50 percent chance that the resulting story won’t focus on the right message
      On Message Off Message Off Message
    • Critique: Message Out of Alignment
      • When what you say is out of sync with how you say it, your message will be lost
      Source: Mehrabian, A. (1981), Silent messages: Implicit communication of emotions and attitudes
    • Key Messages
      • Unless you consciously think about WHAT you want to communicate, your responses won’t be focused
      • Defining a set of key messages (3 or 4) can help focus responses
    • Great Key Messages
      • Start with the fundamental truth
      • Support it with data
      • Have a personal anecdote ready that makes the message personal and memorable
    • But…
      • What about when the reporter plays hardball?
    • Nightmare Questions
      • Take a moment and write down five questions that you hope will never be asked in an interview
      • Why are these questions keeping you awake?
      • What if you could welcome these questions?
    • The Art of Bridging
      • The concept: your role is to communicate YOUR message
      • In practice: inject your message into your answers, regardless of the question
      • The challenge: being responsive and disciplined
    • Three Part Process
      • Question – Welcome every question as an opportunity
      • Response – Acknowledge the question and briefly respond
      • Message – As quickly as possible, bridge to your purpose
    • Bridging Phrases Can Help
      • But we are focused on…
      • What’s really important is…
      • What your audience really cares about is…
      • What I can tell you is…
    • Key Takeaways
      • Journalists can help serve the public good and build trust
      • There is a balance between exposure and access
      • Crises can be opportunities
      • There is no substitute for a confident, powerful spokesperson
    • Your City in the News Be Ready for your Close-Up Media Relations Training September 30, 2008